I had quite the interesting conversation with a close friend yesterday. It was so eye opening!! At some point I hope to be able to explain my heart on the matter eloquently, but here is my first shot:
We were discussing body image and womanhood. I have not yet disclosed this on my blog, but it is another quite significant part of who I am. I have battled anorexia for over 10 years now. Over the past year or so I have had a relapse and I am currently working my way back to a healthy weight. I argue to my boyfriend that my eating disorder is not about image. I say this because to me, it seems to be a coping mechanism, and unlike in my past, I do not usually view myself as being fat. I still cannot figure out why I will starve myself and think of my looks so much when I know I am thin. Well, my friend said to me yesterday, "It is hard not to think of your looks all the time when you 'grow up pretty.'" This statement really rang true to me. When I think back on my life, I have never thought of myself as much better looking than your average young woman, but since I can remember, people have remarked on my beauty and thin figure. I was always told I was beautiful and I had a "perfect body," once puberty hit. I was even voted "Best Physique'" by my high school senior class ten years ago. I mention this because I had a realization that I think of my looks so often because in some ways I have been "known for" my looks. It is not what I chose, it is what I was handed. I am not complaining nor am I boasting; this is just simple fact. So at times I am thinking, "what if I am not pretty anymore? what if I am no longer the thin one?"
I speak often about how I want to be known for my heart. For my kindness, integrity, generosity and loyal friendships. And I try to think that way, but those image thoughts continue to enter my head. This really helps me when I think of possibly having the opportunity and blessing of raising a daughter someday. What if she's naturally beautiful and thin? What if she isn't? Well, either way, it is so imperative that I always compliment her heart and her attitude. It will be my responsibility to make sure he self worth is founded on how God sees her, and on how she sees herself from the inside out. This is something I am striving to work on and be concious of as I compliment others'.
What are your thoughts on this?
4 months ago